Foxconn 975X7AB-8EKRS2H - Page 2

..:: 975X7AB-8EKRS2H Packaging ::..

Letís start off by examining the quality of the 975X7AB-8EKRS2HĎs product packaging. As we have always found with previous offerings from Foxconn, the Userís Manual was excellent. The manual covers the hardware installation, and software setup processes in excellent but not overbearing detail. It offers detailed pin out diagrams for those users who might choose to utilize built-in IEEE1394 and USB 2.0 chassis ports instead of the expansion brackets that are offered. To further make the 975X7AB-8EKRS2H a user friendly product, Foxconn has also included a large poster style installation guide covering hardware, BIOS, and FOX ONE software installation.

In terms of additional hardware, Foxconn has provided two black, rounded IDE cables as well as a rounded floppy cable. This is the same setup that we found with Foxconnís i955X product when it debuted. Serial ATA wise, we find two dual power cables, as well as four black data cables. The original AA product fell short in terms of SATA data cables, only featuring two, and those were red. The smorgasbord of colored cables has gone out the window with the AB version, and to that I must say, good riddance.

Other items that have been included are a rear expansion bracket supporting four additional USB 2.0 capable ports, bringing the system total to eight. The original AA version of this board only added two USB 2.0 ports via the expansion bracket. Foxconn has also chosen to include a bracket for both 6-pin and 4-pin IEEE1394 connections, as well as an additional serial port bracket. This was replaced with the SATA connector on the I/O panel, and given theyíre still put to use, itís nice to see Foxconn add this in. All of these expansion brackets feature rounded cables in the same black sheathing as found on the ribbon cables. Clearly, the AB version of this board sports an improved product package, Foxconn did their homework.

Overall Iíd have to say that Iím quite pleased with the 975X7AB-8EKRS2HĎs product package. The package works its way back in a positive direction from the rather lackluster 955X7AA-8EKRS2, and certainly offers some improvements over the AA version of this same product. Foxconn has added the poster installation guide with their new boards, certainly one of the nicer ones Iíve seen I should point out, along with the Serial Port bracket, but I was left wanting just a little more. The 975X7AB-8EKRS2H still doesnít quite muster up our full love, but it seems Foxconn is working their way back to product packages like the beloved 925XE7AA-8EKRS2 had.